9am Chelsea news LIVE: Werner ‘talking to Rudiger about Blues transfer’, Pjanic-Jorginho swap back on, Willian to PSG – The Sun

CHELSEA are preparing for the Premier League's restart, with their first fixture set to take place on the weekend of Saturday, June 20 assuming safety criteria are met.

And the Blues are stepping up their pursuit of Timo Werner, as they reportedly deploy Antonio Rudiger to sell the club to his fellow German.

Get all the latest Chelsea news and gossip here…

  • CHELSEA WANT CORONA

    Chelsea have held talks with Porto star Jesus Corona, according to his agent Matias Bunge.

    The Blues may need to replace Willian if he leaves this summer with 27-year-old Mexico international Corona on their radar.

    Bunge told Mexican outlet Medio Tiempo: “At some point we talked to them [Chelsea]. I cannot say if he’s option A, B or C, now they are rather rumours.

    “We’ll have to wait a bit for this to continue moving forward and for the leagues to begin again, and from there see what the next movements will be because the market is a little bit stopped.

    “He has two years left on his contract. He did awaken a lot of interest for his participation in this particular tournament [Primeira Liga], which has been outstanding and at a high level, but now with the current situation of the virus everything has slowed down a bit, the signings are in quarantine.”

  • SARRI ABOUT THAT

    Gianfranco Zola reckons two players suffered heavily under Maurizio Sarri's reign at Chelsea.

    Zola was Sarri's assistant during his one season at Stamford Bridge, where he recorded a 61.9% win rate and landed the Europa League before departing for Juventus.

    “They were talented players, like Hazard and Willian, players who know how to win games on their own, but they were suffering from the type of exercises and type of training we were doing – but it was necessary for the others,” Zola told beIN Sports.

    “I’ll be honest, they were brilliant because they got bored, but they kept doing it throughout and that was the reason why when everyone was dropping we were going up towards the end.”

  • GOOD MORNING CHELSEA FANS

    Signing either Philippe Coutinho or Timo Werner seemed a pipe-dream for Chelsea fans this summer –  let alone recruiting both.

    And although “BUT NOW…” would be an exaggeration,  it does actually seem there could be serious believers in and outside the Blues' camp.

    SportBild say Antonio Rudiger is doing all he can to persuade Germany and ex-Stuttgart team-mate Timo Werner to join him at Chelsea.

    Liverpool appear to be the Blues' main rivals, should RB Leipzig agree to sell their prize striking asset.

    But the Reds are reportedly baulking at the 24-year-old's £52million asking price.

    And in Spain Mundo Deportivo claim Chelsea are the front-runners for Barcelona flop Coutinho, whose current loan club Bayern declined to activate their buy clause.

    Arsenal and Coutinho's old club Liverpool have also been linked with the Brazil playmaker, 27.

    Meanwhile, Jesus Corona's agent Matias Bunge says the Blues have held talks over the Porto winger.

    With veteran wideman Willian and Pedro set to exit the Bridge, Mexico star Corona has been identified as a more realistic alternative recruit to £120million-rated Jadon Sancho.

    Goal, though, suggest pacy Villarreal ace Samu Chukwueze, 21,is another serious option.

    And Juventus are reportedly still keen on a swap deal involving Miralem Pjanic and Chelsea anchorman Jorginho. 

  • CHUK A NEW NAME IN THE RACE

    Chelsea could turn to Villarreal's Samu Chukwueze in their hunt for a new winger this summer, according to reports.

    But with BVB refusing to drop their asking price, the West Londoners appear to have privately conceded defeat in the race to sign the much-coveted 20-year-old.

    So with Manchester United now the overwhelming favourites to acquire Sancho, the Blues are having to consider other options.

    The Blues had been hoping to prise Jadon Sancho away from Borussia Dortmund in the coming months.

    And according to Goal, Villarreal livewire Chukwueze is one being carefully considered.

    The 21-year-old has become a regular in LaLiga after coming through the Yellow Submarine's academy.

    Chukwueze regularly troubles defences with his outstanding dribbling ability, although his final ball could do with some refining – having provided four assists in addition to four goals this season.

  • JOSE FEARS INJURIES

    Jose Mourinho fears Project Restart will bring pre-season problems to June.

    The Premier League campaign, suspended since March 13, will resume on June 17.

    Tottenham boss Mourinho cannot wait for top-flight football to return but said: “We have to be ready for problems now because this is pre-season, and pre-season brings problems.

    “The players have had a long time without playing, without even training on the pitch, without competing, so now the players are back, I can’t imagine it’s going to be different for us.

    “We have to be very careful with the players’ welfare, and this pre-season is probably more difficult than other pre-seasons, because they come from a long period without training.

    “We don’t know how we’re going to arrive for the first match.”

    Tottenham will restart the season with a ‘home’ clash against Manchester United.

  • PROJECT RESTART 'NOT PERFECT'

    SunSport columnist Karren Brady says clubs have to accept Project Restart “won't be perfect” if they want the season finished.

    The West ham vice-chairman says: “It’s a delicate balance. 

    “But if we want to finish this season, we are all going to have to accept a restart won’t be perfect.

    “There are obvious and genuine concerns about what happens to your match results if your club has a number of players testing positive for coronavirus, or in self-isolation.

    And as a result you simply cannot field your usual or strongest starting XI. Or what if other teams play a weakened first XI by choice when they have nothing to play for, or they want to give their first-team players a longer break.

    “Or they simply want to protect players from catching the virus, and that ends up skewing results? Or what if your manager tests positive, as Arsenal’s did back in March?”

  • TIMO SHOULD RUDI WELL JOIN BLUES

    Antonio Rudiger is doing all he can to persuade Germany and ex-Stuttgart team-mate Timo Werner to join him at Chelsea, SportBild. say

    Liverpool appear to be the Blues' main rivals should RB Leipzig agree to sell their prize striking asset.

    But the Redsare reportedly baulking at the 24-year-old's £52million asking price.

  • ED-ING OFF ON A HIGH NOTE

    Eden Hazard's glorious two-goal Chelsea swansong in a 4-1 Europa League final win over Arsenal exactly one year ago has brought back mixed memories.

    While such a handsome win over their London neighbours will always mean special memories, it also signalled a farewell to one of the Blues' greatest ever playmakers.

    And it was also a night for other landmark events, as this tweet shows.

  • MAYOR'S FAN FEARS

    London Mayor Sadiq Khan admits he is worried about fans turning up outside games and spreading Covid-19 when the Premier League restarts.

    He told LBC Radio: “ Even though I'm a south Londoner, I support Liverpool and that's why a small part of my brain is keen for us to return.

    “But actually the bigger part of my brain is saying safety is what matters.

    “I am concerned about any action that could inadvertently lead to the virus spreading.

    “I know, human nature as it is, fans will turn up to see the coach arriving, to listen to the atmosphere – the players inside the stadium even though they're not allowed in, to see the coach leaving, to buy t-shirts and scarves. So police and councils need to enforce the rules.

    “The overwhelming measures to social distancing are still there.

    “We can't have fans congregating around the stadiums… It's really important clubs work with police and others to make sure we get this right.”

  • PHIL THE BLUES

    Chelsea are the front-runners to sign Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona, according to reports.

    The Bayern Munich loanee – currently injured after surgery – is top of Barca’s list for sale, after failing to meet expectations since signing from Liverpool.

    The Blues reckon they could get him for £72.3million.

    According to Mundo Deportivo, Arsenal are also among the clubs interested in signing the Brazilian.

  • BLUES HOLD CORONA TALKS

    Chelsea have held talks to sign Porto winger Jesus Corona, his agent says.

    With veteran wideman Willian and Pedro set to exit the Bridge,Corona has been identified as a more realistic alternative recruit to £120million-rated Jadon Sancho.

    Corona's representative Matias Bunge claims discussions are already under way over the Mexico star, 27.

    Borussia Dortmund's England attacker Sancho, 20 is reportedly also interesting Manchester United and perhaps Liverpool too.

  • PJANIC ATTACK

    Juventus are still keen on doing a swap deal between Miralem Pjanic and Jorginho, according to Corriere dello Sport.

    Boss Maurizio Sarri, who preceded Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge, believes Jorginho would be the “ideal” signing for his side and has already initiated contact with the Blues.

    And the most likely way for the cash strapped Old Lady to push the transfer through would be to sell Pjanic to Stamford Bridge in return, even though the Bosnian “doesn't seem convinced”.

    Interestingly, Pjanic would be keen to join Barcelona in exchange for Juventus target Arthur, but Barca have no intention of letting the Brazilian go.

  • TIM TO GO

    Chelsea are keen on signing Timo Werner and Antonio Rudiger is doing all he can to convince his fellow German to move to Stamford Bridge, reports Bild.

  • SANCHO UNDER STRAIN

    Borussia Dortmund midfielder Thomas Delaney claims Jadon Sancho is starting to feel the pressure of transfer speculation linking him with clubs like Manchester United and Chelsea.

    Denmark star Delaney feels the England attacker, 20, could be suffering from the huge expectation over his performances.

    With an outstanding total of 17 goals and 20 assists this season, Sancho is yet to score since Bundesliga's return from the coronavirus shutdown – owing largely to a calf injury restricting his game time.

    Delaney described Sancho to ESPN as: “Clearly, one of the biggest talents that I've played with.

    “With that talent comes a lot of pressure, and I think he slowly starts to feel that from the England national team and clubs surrounding him now.

    “Up until this point he's been a talent performing very well, performing better than what he is expected to do, but there was always going to be a next step, and that's going to be interesting – the next step in his career and his development.”

  • QUIDS IN FOR MOUSS

    Lyon are ready to let Moussa Dembele go for £45million, with Frank Lampard attempting to convince Marina Granovskaia to make it happen.

    According to L’Equipe the Chelsea boss has some convincing to do to make the move happen.

    Lampard is keen to have another striker to bolster his attack.

    And Dembele’s 22 goals in 42 games this season give a good indication he has the ability to succeed in England.

    That, coupled with the fact that he has already played for Fulham and Celtic.

  • MAKING A STAND

    The Premier League have confirmed they WILL use neutral venues on police advice, as we reported earlier.

    A statement reads: “The Premier League’s ambition is to complete all of our remaining fixtures this season home and away, where possible.

    “We are working with our clubs to ensure all risks are assessed and minimised, while co-operating with the police at a local and national level.

    “Discussions with the National Police Chiefs’ Council and UK Football Policing Unit have been positive and are continuing.

    “We are prepared for all outcomes and have a neutral venue contingency.”

  • CHEER FOR FANS

    Premier League chief exec Richard Masters is positive that there will be a return of fans to grounds in ‘phases’.

    He said: “No one knows when matches will move away from the behind-closed-doors model and it is right to have contingency plans in place.

    “But there is optimism at the Premier League and at clubs that we will see fans back in the stadiums next season and it may happen on a phased basis.

    “Hopefully it will be a huge morale boost and that is what we've been working towards.

    “We've got some incredible fans in this country and we all know the Premier League as we know and love it won't be fully back until we have fans back through the turnstiles.

    “Getting it back on our TV screens for people to enjoy will hopefully give the whole country a boost.”

  • PETR THE GREAT

    Petr Cech has revealed he still feels the agony of defeat in last year's Europa League final… despite now working for the victors.

    Chelsea thumped the Gunners 4-1 in Baku, in what turned out to be Maurizio Sarri's first trophy as a coach.

    Days after the match, Cech left Arsenal for his former club, where he is now a technical director.

  • SACRE BLEU

    PSG are to battle with Arsenal and Tottenham over Chelsea winger Willian, according to reports in France.

    The Brazilian is set to become one of the summer market's hottest properties if he cannot agree to a new deal at Stamford Bridge.

    With Chelsea deemed unlikely to offer the 31-year-old his desired three-year deal, he will become a free agent at the end of the season.

    Le10Sport report on PSG holding plenty of interest in offering Willian a chance to play for the Ligue 1 champions.

    Arsenal, Barcelona and Spurs are also keeping an eye on his situation but Real Madrid are said to have turned down a chance to put in a bid.

    Ok Diario detail how Zinedine Zidane felt the midfielder was too old to invest in with his right-wing position also not a priority at the Bernabeu.

  • KHAN'T RUSH IT

    London Mayor Sadiq Khan is worried about the Premier League restarting – even though he is a Liverpool fan.

    He fears it could lead to another rise in Covid-19 cases.

    He said: “I am concerned about any action that could inadvertently lead to the virus spreading.

    “Let me make a confession. Even though I'm a South Londoner, I support Liverpool and that's why a small part of my brain is keen for us to return.

    “But actually the bigger part of my brain is saying safety is what matters.

    “All of us need cheering up and there's nothing more joyous for sports fans than watching sport on TV, even without the crowds – but we need to make sure we don't inadvertently give an opportunity to the virus to spread.”

  • CUP LATEST

    The FA Cup semi-finals will take place over the weekend of 18-19 July, according to the FA.

    The schedule for the Emirates FA Cup quarter-finals, which was originally drawn on March 4, are due to take place on June 27 and 28:

    • Leicester City v Chelsea
    • Newcastle United v Manchester City
    • Sheffield United v Arsenal
    • Norwich City v Manchester United

    JAD-ED

    Jadon Sancho is starting to feel the pressure of transfer speculation linking him with Manchester United and Chelsea, according to Thomas Delaney.

    The Borussia Dortmund midfielder believes there is a huge expectation surrounding his club colleague that may not benefit his performances.

    With an outstanding total of 17 goals and 20 assists this season, Sancho is yet to score since Bundesliga's return from the coronavirus shutdown – owing largely to a calf injury restricting his game time.

    Delaney described Sancho to ESPN as: “Clearly, one of the biggest talents that I've played with.

    “With that talent comes a lot of pressure, and I think he slowly starts to feel that from the England national team and clubs surrounding him now.

    “Up until this point he's been a talent performing very well, performing better than what he is expected to do, but there was always going to be a next step, and that's going to be interesting – the next step in his career and his development.”

    NEUTRAL STANCE

    Six Premier League games will be played at neutral venues due to a request from the police.

    Liverpool's clash against Everton – which could see Jurgen Klopp's side secure the title – is one of the matches included.

    Deputy Chief Constable Mark Roberts said: “Our discussions with the Premier League throughout this process have been positive, with a shared focus on the priority of public health.

    “As such we have reached a consensus that balances the needs of football, while also minimising the demand on policing.

    “The majority of remaining matches will be played, at home and away as scheduled, with a small number of fixtures played at neutral venues.”

    LAMBO WRECK

    Former Chelsea goalkeeper Marcin Bulka wrecked his £200,000 Lamborghini in a horror crash during lockdown in Poland.

    Fortunately the stopper, 20, escaped unhurt and was released from hospital following a check over after the dramatic smash.

    It is understood the Polish youngster was driving the rented yellow Lamborghini Huracan Evo Spyder near his home in Wyszogrod, Warsaw at around midnight on Wednesday night.

    But when he attempted an overtake, he is thought to have collided head-on into an oncoming car.

    Pictures circulated on social media showed the luxurious Lambo on the grass verge beside the road with its airbags activated.

    Later images revealed the supercar's extensive damage and then it being towed away on the back of a pick-up truck.

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